6 Key Areas In A Staff Appraisal Agenda

Staff appraisals are an ideal opportunity to provide feedback and provide motivation for employees. 

Trouble is that many managers see it as a box ticking exercise and as a result employees lose interest and see it as a waste of everyone’s time

So what are the 6 key areas that you need to cover in a staff appraisal meeting to make it valuable.

  1. The appraisal purpose.  Make sure that you explain the purpose of the appraisal.  For me a key purpose is to give the employee and employer the opportunity to reflect on the past and look forward together.
  2. Employee self assessment of performance.  The starting point should always be the employees self assessment.  The most important thing you can do as the manager is to really listen to the employee rather than jumping in with your opinion.
  3. Manager feedback on performance.  If there are any major surprises for the employee from your feedback you are probably not managing effectively day to day.  Your feedback should be acknowledging all of the good things the employee is already doing and things that would help them be even better.
  4. Development plans.  How much time you spend on this depends very much on the individual whose appraisal you are doing.  If for example you are managing are accountants or professionals there will be certain criteria they will have to meet in terms of continued professional development.  Others less so.
  5. Career plans.  This is an area many managers will avoid.  Some worry that their best people will leave.  The reality is that good people will move on.  You can’t avoid this.  Equally people always remember the manager who takes time to help them fulfill their career aspirations.
  6. Objectives for next period.  Try to avoid the same as last period approach to keep employees motivated.  Try to set objectives that build on the past and lay foundations for the future.

Truth is there is a lot of value in appraisals if they are done well. 

What small changes could you make to bring more value to staff appraisals?

About the Author Duncan Brodie

Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.

Leave a Comment:

Staff Motivation says 1 December 2009

I Like to read about staff motivation.Got your page on Tuesday.Your Post 6 Key Areas In A Staff Appraisal Agenda | Goals and Achievements is really Nice.Thanks.

Stress Training Mark says 22 January 2010

Good list, cheers Duncan – I’d add listening to the wider context they’d been working in (e.g. if they were going through a messy divorce) and also an emotional element – work isn’t all cognitive!

All the Brighton best,

admin says 24 January 2010

Hi Mark

Thanks so much for your comment. As you say, listening in the wider contex is so important too.


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